My day’s work

I’ve been having some problems with my bee keeping. Last summer, I had a very significant swarm:

which occurred just after a rain storm. In my hours-long quest to catch the swarm, or at very least figure out what was going on with the rest of the hive, I wound up staring down the barrel of an open hive through of very angry bees when it started to rain again. Bees do not like the roof to be missing from their house when it rains. Go figure. At any rate, this was the only time I got more than one sting, and the bees chased me back to the garage. In fact, when I removed my veil, I discovered that there were still a few bees attached to the back of it.

As a (not unexpected) result of this little incident, I became extremely tentative. When I last opened my hive at the beginning of the spring to clean, reverse, and inspect it, I had such a severe anxiety attack that I closed it back up unfininshed, and returned to my home, self-branded A Bad Beekeeper.

Today, I redeemed myself partially. Brigihid would be proud of my newly split, if unconventional, TWO BEEHIVES:

Yes, the new one is upside down as a result of there being existing brood in the honey super. I’m going to do a reversal in a couple of weeks, as long as they don’t get fed up with me and run away. It is also skewed to the left, but I thought that the girls might like to settle in before I muck about any more. After discovering that there was no clear consensus on how to split a hive, rather than creating a nucleus, I went with a modification of the Side-by-side split. We’ll see how they take to it. It may not work, so I may continue to have to accept my position as Bad Beekeeper.

However, I did manage to do a 45 minute operation without gloves, without stings, and with a minimum of damaged bees. It looks like I may have to feed tomorrow, which seems odd with fields of clover all around, but so sayeth the not-bad-beekeepers.

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